Boredom is past in many different ways, however, most of Generation Z tends to pass it with Twitter. Ah, yes. What better way to spend your mornings than scrolling through your timeline or creeping on someone’s profile? It’s a tradition; one that is forever cemented within this beautiful Generation. Naturally, being a part of Generation Z comes with great responsibility, and I take it upon myself to follow the practices of my de facto classification as a Generation Z member. But, wait. Technically I was born in the Millennial Generation, though, some argue the cutoff is mid-1990s….. Anyway, you get the point I’m trying to make.
So there I was Tuesday morning on, by far, my favorite Social Media site. I wasn’t expecting anything out of the ordinary. Maybe I’d see a few interesting and eye-catching stats from one of the many MLB stats account I religiously follow, but that was about as high as my expectations were set. What I saw while on the Twittersphere was mind-blowing (courtesy of ESPN’s Mark Simon), and pertains to the embedded tweet below.
This graph says everything needed to be said about the Mets offense the last 30 days pic.twitter.com/948PKlcVI5
— Mark Simon (@msimonespn) August 19, 2014
Yes, the focus of the above tweet isn’t the subject of this article. I mean, surprise, surprise, the New York Mets are doing bad. At some point you just got to accept mediocrity, right? Okay. That was harsh and irrelevant, so I’ll move on to what I came here to discuss. And that, my friends, would be the San Diego Padres’ offensive surge.
As you should be able to see with the graphic above, the Padres are one of the best teams from an offensive perspective over the past thirty days. In fact, according to that chart they have highest-team OBP in, again, the last thirty days. Alas, it’s likely too late for the Padres, who are given just a 0.7% chance by Fangraphs at making the postseason. The Padres, if you’re unaware, have been, by a landslide, the worst offensive team in baseball this season, and that’s evidently indicated by the statistics. They rank last in runs scored, batting average, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage as a club in Major League Baseball this year, even with their latest offensive outburst.
Luckily, thanks to the ever-so-wonderful Fangraphs, I’m able to view team-statistics month-by-month. My conclusion after checking San Diego’s August numbers was, damn, this graph was accurate. The Padres are third in wRC+, first in OBP, ninth in SLG, and second in fWAR the month of August. The universally labeled Achilles’ Heel for San Diego going forward was, well, not so much of a shortcoming anymore — at least for the time being.
Players finally are hitting like they’re supposed to! It’s a miracle! Jedd Gyorko (1o6 wRC+ and 0.1 fWAR) is not the worst offensive player in baseball for the first time in a while. That must feel good for both the Padres and Gyorko, because if San Diego is to succeed offensively going forward they’re going to need the bat he showed in 2013. Seth Smith (176 wRC+ and 0.6 fWAR) continues to outdo himself, and it makes you wonder if maybe he really has made adjustments that could forge him into an elite offensive commodity consistently. Other position players such as Yonder Alonso (315 wRC+ and 0.8 fWAR), Tomy Medica (161 wRC+ and 0.5 fWAR), Will Venable (148 wRC+ and 0.5 fWAR), Everth Cabrera (147 wRC+ and 0.4 fWAR), Abraham Almonte (111 wRC+ and 0.5 fWAR), and Yangervis Solarte (107 wRC+ and 0.2 fWAR) aren’t doing too shabby themselves either, wouldn’t you say?
Kidding aside, what the Padres’ hitters have done this month is absolutely incredible. Everyone, well mostly all, have been at their best this month. However, unlike the Seattle Mariners (whom I wrote about Sunday) the Padres sudden offensive explosion is meaningless, because in all likelihood they’ll end up in the same position as the Houston Astros, Texas Rangers, and Chicago Cubs, watching the playoffs unfold from their couches at home.
But, still, it’s encouraging to see some of these young-hitters flourish, and gain confidence and experience which is crucial to a player. Despite the disappointment stemming from this season, the Padres and their fans have to be optimistic about their team’s recent offensive prosperity. Maybe, just maybe, this is a sign of things to come, and the Padres could very well find themselves playing October baseball in 2015 with a formidable offense.